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The F70 gets a lot of stick for being a difficult camera to use. Granted the user interface harks back to a time when push button control was favoured over the now standard top plate dials seen on many SLRs. But spend some time getting to know your F70 and you'll fall in love with its vast range of photograpic options which dazzled the camera market when it was first unveiled back in 1994. Despite its age many of these features are still impressive. The camera has only just been replaced by the F80 which is gives some indication of how reliable and solid a performer the F70 has become. What's more, its build is equally solid and you get a reassurance from handling it that this camera will stand up to the weather and wear and tear. It certainly feels a lot more sturdy than the f80. Equipped with more exposure modes than you can shake a stick at, and a fast 4000/sec top shutter speed, and array of flash modes for the in-built Speedlight, one niggling omission is the lack of Depth of Field preview, although the HyperFocal exposure mode does go some way to help you get maximum depth of field. I own the dateback version which also sports a panorama mode. This exposes a portion of the film to give the effect of a panoramic view, It works well, but you need to tell the developing lab before you get the panoramic photos processed. All in all a great camera. Have some fun getting used to the space-age interface and array of buttons and you'll be in control of a capable beast that will last you for years. Never fails me.
I am a relatively keen amateur photographer and had used mid range Pentax SLRs for 20+ years. I was very keen to step up into the higher quality bracket but couldn't afford in excess of £1000 for the higher end Nikon/Canon cameras. The F70 offers many of the features and most importantly the quality that the professional and semi professional cameras offer. Exposure reading is oustanding and the auto focus extremely accurate and the options for varying the programmes are also very wide indeed. Technically the quality of my photos has improved enormously - now I just have to improve the creative side! It does have shortcomings though. It isn't brilliant easy to use which occasionally puts me off trying different options and the autofocus is hesitant in reduced light. A minor niggle - but one which has ruined some photos - is the fact that the built in flash (which is excellent) doesn't pop up on its own. You just get a warning signal in the view finder. The kit I purchased comprised camera plus 28-80mm, 70-300mm and 50mm (each with skylight filters) for a total of £750. Highly recommended if you great quality photos and don't mind fiddling about.